If you are a cat owner you will know the troubles of cleaning. Trying to remove excess fur from the carpets, dealing with poop and pee, or even vomit, is a complete hassle. Getting pet-friendly flooring is very expensive and also daunting since cats are prone to scratching. Luckily Laminate flooring is affordable, cat-friendly, and can be a good choice for your home.
Laminate flooring is a look-alike of hardwood flooring that costs a fraction of the price. It’s a multi-layered synthetic flooring product that is fused together with a protective resin layer. This flooring is a good choice for cats since it has many benefits and will be ideal to minimize dirt and excess fur, however, there are several pros and cons that must be understood before you choose this type of flooring.
Let’s take a closer look at the Pros and Cons to see if laminate flooring is worth getting, for a home with cats.
PRO : Scratch Resistant.
Cats have sharp claws and are prone to scratching. Carpets and wooden flooring can be greatly damaged by this destructive behavior, however, Laminate flooring is a scratch-resistant option. It can adequately withstand the impact of your cat’s claws.
When choosing a laminate for your home, be sure to look at the specifications of the product’s abrasion classifications (AC). This refers to the durability of the laminate. The A3 rating will be more suitable to withstand scratching, biting, and any type of claw action.
PRO : Great For Cat Allergies.
People who are allergic to cats know the suffering they have to endure when ever they come into contact with any type of feline allergens. Laminate flooring makes it easier for people with allergies since this type of flooring dont trap allergens such as fur, dander or even saliva.
This makes it easier to mop and sweep, preventing an allergic reaction before it starts.
PRO : Improved Water-Resistant Feature.
Originally laminate flooring was not water-resistant, therefore when water made contact with it, the melamine would get damaged and the board would expand. However, the latest designs are more advanced and can withstand water much better.
These new laminate designs have a Uni-click locking system with a hydro seal. This means that water will not be absorbed and the laminate will not get damaged. This feature makes it ideal for cats since urine and water won’t pose any threat to them. However, with it comes limitations and certain warranty clauses as they aren’t waterproof.
When shopping for water-resistant laminates be specific and choose one that has the water-resistant feature since some laminates cannot withstand water well.
PRO : Inexpensive.
When you have pets, specifically cats you need to prepare for certain damages. Cats like to bite and scratch as it’s an instinctive behavior that cannot be removed. Therefore when it comes to flooring, you need to prepare for certain damages. Luckily with laminates, it’s difficult for it to get damaged and it’s cheap to replace.
Laminate flooring is way cheaper than traditional hardwood floors. The price ranges from $1 to $3 per square foot while compared to the $10-$15 price you would pay for regular hardwood floors. This will make it more affordable to replace in case of damages.
PRO : Easy To Clean.
Cats can be very messy at times, since they are pets and it’s understandable, however, cleaning can be a hassle if you have flooring that absorbs. Laminate flooring is often easy to clean without any chemicals needed. They can be wiped, swept, or mopped within a few minutes.
Cat urine or poop can also be easily cleaned without a trace left behind. In cases where urine is left standing, the floors can get stained and could smell. In this case, you can use a cleaning agent, to remove stains and any odor that is left behind.
This easy to clean type of flooring is a must for pet owners.
PRO : Highly Durable.
Laminates are highly durable due to the top residual layer that protects them. This layer prevents the laminates from damage caused by foot traffic, pets’ claws, scratches, and most dents. This product can last between 10-15 years or longer if taken off.
Most manufacturers have an AC rating assigned to each product which gives specific details for usage. The higher the rating the more durable the product will be. For cats, the AC 3 rating is recommended to withstand scratches and claw action.
Here’s a reference to the different ratings.
- AC 1 – For residual use ( Low Traffic Areas )
- AC2 – For residual use ( Moderate Traffic Areas )
- AC3 – For residual use ( Withstand pet scratches )
- AC4 – General Commercial Areas
- AC5 – Heavy Commercial Areas.
CON : Slippery.
Laminate floors tend to have a slick, non-resistant surface. This can make it difficult for cats to find their footing when running or jumping. This is due to the fact that it provides little grip for their little paws to grasp each step.
This can become difficult for pets to adjust to this type of flooring and they can get irritated, however I know some people who’s pets simply love the the slippery surface as they choose to embrace it while playing around.
CON : Noisy.
Laminate flooring is noisy and can be quite loud. This is because they are rigid and installed directly on the subfloor. On the other hand, cats are easily freaked out by sudden noises and squeaks. This sudden sounds can be quite daunting for the cat and your cat will require time to adjust and make sense of it. After all these fur balls are scared of everything.
However to combat the sound and noise created by the laminates, you can install soundproofing to absorb the noise and the echo created when pressure is applied to the laminates.
CON : Susceptible to Water Damage
Even though the new and improved laminates are water resistant they are still prone to water damage. This new feature allows laminates to handle water much better, however with repetitive spills at the same spot, it’s possible for water damage to occur.
An easy fix will require a good cleaning schedule to wipe off any water, urine, and spills before they can affect the wood. These laminates do not absorb water fast so there is a window period to mop spills before any damage is done. Top-quality laminates are also a solution since they have a thicker wear layer to protect against water damage.